Tuesday, December 23, 2014

December Things

We're in full Christmas mode here, and before calm breaks way to crazy I thought I'd sit for a while and write of recent days. I just came back from the store, twice, because there's always something I forget to write down on my list. This time it was the Gruyère. With the exception of a few last minute items still on their way, the gifts are wrapped and all nestled under the tree. My menus are pretty much determined, and I'm about ready to start with the preparations. So my apron will accessorize the kitchen once I hit "publish" and the activity will officially be on! What a privilege it is to celebrate God's love for us, and how humbled I am by His humility for our sake!

Little gifts the boys prepared for each other (above).

This is the first year where all my kids insisted on taking a portion of their savings to exchange gifts with each other. The space beneath the tree is quite full, and I am thankful for the expressions of love it represents.


We recently had a time to celebrate Michael, my December baby who's not exactly a baby anymore. This months marks his twelfth year. I will forever remember that quiet, solitary December when he was born, and those December nights all cozied up with him by our first Christmas tree. He was such a cozy baby and made such a wonderful gift to our family.

He normally chooses something other than cake, and this year he wanted fresh cinnamon rolls as a birthday breakfast celebration. It was a nice way to start an otherwise cold and rainy weekday morning! We took a day off school and went ice skating-- around and around the rink we went for a full 4 hours!

Skateboarding: His new afternoon pastime.

At twelve years of age, this boy wasn't exactly keen on letting me take a ton of pictures, but he did let me snap this one yesterday morning. He uses hair product now, and he enjoys making goofy styles in the morning when he's still in his PJ's. (BTW, HK= Hong Kong)

Michael. Where do I start with him? Oh my goodness, he is becoming such a funny guy! Mostly it's on purpose, sometimes it's not. I think my favorite quote of the year was back in the summer months when the kids were all playing in the pool and I was sitting on the edge with my feet in the water. Michael got out and walked around the edge. A little surprised, I said, "My goodness, Michael, you are  becoming such a handsome guy!" Without skipping a beat and in all seriousness, he replied, "Thanks! I was just thinking so myself!"

Michael is our global, outside-of-the-box thinker. He is confident and social, and I have no doubt he is more like his father than he is like me! It's so neat to see him change and grow, boyhood beginning to show signs of fading, and maturity becoming more promising. I sense I need to communicate trust in this maturity, letting him take a little more charge and responsibility in certain areas. It's an interesting time for sure.

He still loves the outdoors, though now he is no longer content to huddle beneath a bush and inspect the insects. Now he wants to go far, deep in the woods or far from the shore. He loves to mountain bike around our neighborhood, always begging me to let him go farther. He comes back with stories of talking parrots, a tatoo-faced man, and the pressure of figuring out how to fix his bike chain before darkness fell.

He LOVES the beach. He's my California boy all the way.

Yesterday afternoon I took the kids for a short outing. Our mode of transportation was a choice between scooters, bikes, or skateboard. We all chose bikes except for Michael (who got a great workout on his skateboard) and he was the only one to assume it would be warm enough to go swimming. 

Birthday pictures? I'll take it.

This is our December...

The sun was warm and pleasant until this cool marine fog appeared. It took less than 5 minutes to reach us, then we were enveloped.

This is our "weather."

The fog horn in the distance were the last sounds I heard as I drifted off to sleep last night. 

p.s. For those who have asked and expressed concern, I want you to know I am feeling significantly better. My "fog" has lifted. I feel refreshed and I am finding enjoyment in my days again. Thank you to those who prayed or offered words of encouragement.


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